Sunday, September 28, 2008


Deal paves way for Hank Williams treasure trove

It took a fortuitous find and years of legal wrangling, but some of the lesser-known recordings by country great Hank Williams will soon be available for mass consumption.

"The Unreleased Recordings" includes performances from the "Mother's Best Flour" radio program, which Williams hosted on the legendary WSM-AM Nashville in 1951, two years before his death.

Time Life will release the 143 recordings in various packages in the next three years through an exclusive agreement with the Williams estate. The first set is due October 28.

Williams and his band prerecorded 72 shows to run while they were on tour. The shows were recorded on 16-inch acetate discs that were later thrown into the trash during a station move in the '60s but salvaged by WSM employee Les Leverett.


Williams said that even devotees of her father's music will find something new here. "Unless you were listening that morning in 1951, you've never heard that version of 'Cold, Cold Heart,'" she said. "You may have heard the master, but you've never heard the February 3, 1951, version of Hank Williams singing it.

"The fidelity of these recordings (is) better than his MGM masters," she said. "These have not been enhanced or tinkered with. It's as if it was 1951 and my dad was recording it right then. It was a one-time take."

In addition to Williams' best-known material, the recordings include 40 songs he was never known to have performed and others he never recorded commercially, including "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain," "Cherokee Boogie" and "On Top of Old Smoky."

Read the entire article: Deal paves way for Hank Williams treasure trove -- Tuscola County Advertiser (Michigan)

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